What would you do if one fine day you met two identical people around the corner? You would surely go crazy. Well, a Russian candidate had to deal with a couple of stuntmen trying to impersonate him at the polls. His rivals have changed their image and names to be faithful copies of Boris Vishnevsky, a strong contender in the elections.
The candidate's doppelgängers try to confuse the population by appearing on the ballot identically to their adversary. They plan to divert some votes to reduce the total number of votes that the real Vishnevsky can get. Although it seems like a strategy to drive him totally crazy and put him in a totally Kafkaesque environment, the truth is that in the past, a strategy like this has already snatched 30 percent of voters from others.
All of this is done to mislead voters so that they mistake the fake for the real and instead of the real Vishnevsky, vote for one of the forgeries.
The metamorphosis of these two politicians was observed on the day that the electoral commission released the final poster of the ballot to be marked at the polls. But what was everyone's surprise to see that there were three political aspirants with the same name and very similar to each other.
After a restless sleep, Víktor Bykov and Alexei Shmelev awoke as Boris Vishnevsky. Each looked out of their windowsill and saw their former lives as Putin's friend and company manager, respectively, turned into the life of the alternative candidate, Boris Vishnevsky.
The true identities of these candidates were checked by the Novaya Gazeta newspaper, who tried to contact the two Vishnevsky replicants, but upon realizing the journalists' intentions, they cut off all communication.
In fact, Victor Bykov had first registered for the candidacy as Boris Ivanovich, and Shmelev had been known as Boris Gennadevich. Both reappear on the electoral commission's ballot as Vishnevskys from towns of 10 inhabitants born in the civil registry.
According to Asian News, the strategy is not new, throughout Russia's modern history, there have been several cases of spoiler candidates, as they call it. The media point out that Putin is desperate to keep his adversaries at bay, since the real Vishnevsky belongs to the Yabloko party in opposition to the Putin regime, whose candidates are called "alternative" by the current leader of the Russian nation.
It is incredible to see how much politicians are capable of obtaining and deflecting votes. For his part, the real Boris Vishnevksy has said that this will only bring disorientation to the St. Petersburg community, as both candidates appear with beards and a bald head possibly edited in Photoshop that mimics the features of the real Vishnevksy.